Kitchen budgets take a hit in Ludhiana as essentials get dearer
Kitchen essentials such as urad went up to ₹90-110 per kg, while moong ranges between ₹90 to ₹130 per kg in Ludhiana
The month has seen prices of nearly every kitchen essential, starting from pulses, spices, cooking oil, vegetables, and sugar surge significantly, disturbing the ration budgets.
Speaking of the price hike, Pawan Arora, owner of a local general store said, “Urad prices have reached ₹90-110 per kg, while moong ranges between ₹90 to ₹130 per kg. There has been an increase of ₹2 per kg in sugar, ₹8-10 per kg in jaggery. Besides, the price of edible oil per tin has also increased by ₹50-100.”
Arora said his customers who would buy monthly supplies in one go, now buy the same stuff in bits and pieces.
“We have started to customise packets with smaller quantities, so that no retail customer shies away from buying ration within their respective budget,” he said.
Echoing the sentiment, vegetable vendor, Sughriv Gupta said, “I used to fill my cart with investment of ₹1,000-1,500 a day, but now that same amount of vegetables come for about ₹2,000. People tend to mistake that inflated price as our profit, however that is not true.”
Notably, the price of daily use items like cooking oil, vanaspati, sunflower, soya, palm oils, tea leaves, milk, vegetables, wheat, rice, sugar, pulses, has also gone up by over 10% over the last one year.
For instance, as per the data driven from the department of consumer affairs, the average price of one litre of milk has risen to ₹56.8 per litre in April 2023, up from ₹51.4 per litre a year earlier — marking an increase of 10.5%.
Local resident, Harsh Khanna, who was out to buy supplies, said “Stepping into a karyana store or vegetable market is like unleashing a series of unpleasant surprises, everything be it rice, milk, wheat flour, spices, pulses or cereal has just gone out of the budget.”
“No matter how hard a middle-class person tries to stay on budget by compromising on so many things, stocking up your kitchen keeps getting harder by the day,” she added.
Speaking of the ever-increasing burden on the middle-class, Rashmi Arora, a 34-year-old homemaker, said, “Our household earnings are around ₹17,000 a month and it has become nearly impossible to run a kitchen on the same given the price hike on essentials items.”